Remember home? You had a place to sit, to study with no distractions. What do you do when you move out of that environment and shift into a hostel? How do you stay distraction-free?

You know hostel is fun and will not trade it for anything else in college. You form bonds that will last a lifetime, create memories and share experiences that will shape who you become after college. But there’s always a time (usually right before exams) when you need to give up on all that and focus on matter in hand- study to clear the upcoming examination. Here are 5 ways to do so:

1. Schedule Your Time
Easier said than done- but give it a shot. Schedule your study hours and stick by it even if distractions come your way. If you’ve decided to go for a run at 7PM in the evening, and plan to study for three hours before that – stick by it. Even if you got nothing done in your study slot, go for that run. Next day, you’ll automatically focus better in your study slot.

2. Agree on no-interruption slot
Hash out a time slot in the middle of the day after discussing with your friends. No one disturbs each other in that slot, allowing you to focus on your own work interrupted.Leave everything that comes in your mind during this slot for later- that doubt you had? Make a note of it and get it cleared AFTER your no-interruption slot

3. Avoid 5 sec interactions
Our brain has certain residual power in it- when you indulge in a task, the brain keeps working on it long after physically you’ve completed the task. A quick check of your Facebook news feed on your phone, following up on the whatsapp group, browsing your twitter timeline- all last 5 seconds in total, but your brain works long after that. Avoid them like plague during your no-interruption slot.

4. Get those headphones out
This might not work for some, but many swear by it. Search for a work playlist on Youtube, and hit it while studying. Make sure the music has no lyrics and has a certain ‘repetition’ in the beats- techno music, classical music work great. You’ll be able to tune out from your environment fast and get into the zone quicker.

5. Escape
Sometimes, none of the above suggestions work. Decide to step out of your hostel and study at a place you are comfortable at- the local coffee shop, college library, public library or your relatives home. The physical shift gives your mind a sense of seriousness towards the task at hand, while the environment at this new place will create a no-distraction environment.